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Official launch of the PAE project at the “360 Possibles” in Strasbourg on June 27th, 2019

On June 27th, 2019, the partners of the PAE project participated in the 360 ​​Possibles exhibition organised in Strasbourg in the Grand Est by the Grand-eNov regional innovation agency. An PAE stand was held by the partners, with various project communication documents (roll-up, flyers) and some demonstration objects such as a 3D printer or a miniature car running on a hydrogen fuel cell. The PAE stand was a real success, many visitors were interested in the project.

In the early afternoon, an official press conference was organized for the launch of the project. Introduced by the Grand Est CCI President Gilbert Stimpflin, it was then animated by Vincent Carel (ARIA Lorraine Managing Director / Lead Partner PAE) and Ludovic Party (PerfoEST Director within the Pôle Véhicule du Futur). News articles were published the following days in Lorraine and Alsace newspapers.

From left to right: Vincent Carel, Gilbert Stimpflin, Ludovic Party

Adient welcomes EAP partners for their steering committee in Kaiserslautern

On November 27th, 2019, the PAE project partners met in Kaiserslautern, Germany for a steering committee. This meeting was organized by Fahrzeug Initiative Rheinland-Pfalz in the premises of the company Adient, designer of car seats.

In the margins of their meeting, the partners had the chance to visit this company which produces one in three car seats in the world. With 234 sites worldwide and $ 9.2B in revenues in 2018, this company is unquestionably one of the leading manufacturers of car seats. The Kaiserslautern site employs around 550 people, including 25 apprentices. The site is certified competence centre.

EU-funded PAE project strengthens cooperation between automotive clusters in the Greater Region

“The future of the automotive industry: common challenges and opportunities for Germany and France”

From left to right: Andreas Wlasak, Vice President Industrial Design at Faurecia, Jürgen Barke State Secretary at the Ministry of Economic Affairs of the Saarland, Etienne Oudot De Dainville, Minister Counselor for Economic Affairs at the French Embassy in Berlin, Ulrich Selzer Executive Director at Opel, Anish K. Taneja, President of Michelin Northern Europe and Vincent Carel, General Delegate of Aria Lorraine.

Relations between Germany and France are more important than ever. The digitalisation of the automotive industry does not stop at European borders. Germany and France are important economic partners and face many challenges to meet the ever-changing needs of their customers.

Both countries play a crucial role in the future development of the European automotive industry on the continent. “The two countries are in the same boat and must work hand in hand,” said Bernhard Mattes, outgoing president of the German Automobile Industry Association (VDA) at the Frankfurt International Motor Show (IAA). For example, the French automotive industry “participates” in the VDA through its subsidiary Opel. The Director of Autoregion eV, Armin Gehl, a member of the European Automotive Cluster PAE, which brings together 12 Belgian, German, French and Luxembourgish partners, was also invited to the event.

“I am pleased to welcome this cross-border work center within the IAA,” said Mr Mattes, stressing the importance of cross-border cooperation with many suppliers on both sides of the border.

He cautioned against national unilateralism in the face of the challenges facing the automotive industry: “The transformation and digitization of industry do not stop at the border, they can only work together.” cited as an example the joint production of battery cells planned by the French and German governments, in which Paris and Berlin wish to invest billions of dollars. He concluded his welcome of guests with an elegant “Long live France!”

Jürgen Barke, Secretary of State at the Ministry of Economic Affairs of Saarland, also attended this day France at the IAA. He highlighted the important role of the EU-funded PAE cluster. Barke, like the president of the VDA, affirmed the need for cross-border cooperation. He spoke about cooperation in research and development between the universities of Saarbrücken, Metz and Nancy.

Another promising joint project is that between Germany, France and Luxembourg on the subject of autonomous driving.

The Saarland Region, which has around 44,000 employees in the automotive industry, also claims to be a driving force for hydrogen technology as a means of propulsion: “We have a good chance of contributing to progress in this field”, said Mr. Barke.

Vincent Carel, General Delegate of ARIA Lorraine (Headquarters: Nancy) and Head of the Automotive Sector at CCI Grand-Est, is also a partner of the EAP project and stresses the importance of good cooperation between automotive manufacturers in the region. Great Region. In light of the automotive challenges, “we want to attract even more small and medium-sized businesses into our clusters,” Carel said. Armin Gehl of the Autoregion also confirms the desire to broaden the well-begun cooperation in the Sarre-Lor-Lux area, which should be strengthened.

Similarly, Etienne Oudot De Dainville, Minister Counselor for Economic Affairs at the French Embassy in Berlin, believes that close cooperation within the automotive industry between France and Germany is essential. He called for European regulation for autonomous driving and a European strategy for hydrogen.

While the cooperation now seems concrete and there are differences specific to each country, the podium was able to discuss the challenges of the automotive industry, at the dawn of a period of uncertainty and profound changes.

After the roundtable and lunch together, PAE partners offered a guided tour of several IAA exhibitor stands: Daimler, ZF Friedrichshafen, Valeo, Bosch, Ford, Ina Schaeffler and Opel.

Automotive Day 2019 in Liege: a real success for the PAE project

On September, 24th 2019, Technifutur and the University of Liege supported by the other PAE project’s partners organised the Automotive Day 2019 in Liege (Wallonia, Belgium). The topic of this year was “Recycling and life cycle assessment challenges in the automotive sector”.  The event gathered 108 participants from Belgium, France, Germany, Ireland, Luxembourg and Netherlands and thus had a great coverage of the Great Region.

All the morning was dedicated to a plenary session with the participation of several high-level speakers such as the University of Liege, Ford or Febelauto. In the afternoon, participants had the opportunity to participate in B2B sessions as well as in parallel sessions on two topics: the recycling of metallic materials and of non-metallic materials. Here again, high-level speakers animated the sessions, such as Arcelor Mittal, CRM Group or CETIM Grand-Est.

The day ended with company visits: the participants were able to visit Arcelor Mittal, John Cockerill and CRM Group.

PAE first OEM event: visit to Audi in Ingolstadt

Over thirty employees from the automotive supplier branch stepped away from their projects last Tuesday, September 3rd, and headed south to Ingolstadt to take part in the first OEM event of our PAE Interreg project. “Carbon meets automotive” was the kick-off on the evening of the 3rd with two lectures. None other than “The father of the Audi Space Frame” himself, Heinrich Timm, was the featured key speaker of the presentation event, inspiring the participants to consider more than one material to be the best lightweight option for future cars. Timm, former head of the department “Audi Lightweight Design Centre” and now member of the board of Carbon Composites e.V., shared the passion he feels when he approaches the challenges of vehicle development by means of fundamental physical laws. He pointed out that nowadays a lot of misinformation about proper materials and propulsion technologies is spread in public. After giving a comprehensive overview of the materials used in vehicle construction, Timm focused on lightweight construction as enabler for Ecological mobility. Finally, he emphasized the importance of recycling especially for carbon structures and concluded his speech by postulating to use “the right material in the right place”.

Following the opening presentation Dr Brzeski, general manager of A+ Composites, a young technology company located in southwestern Rhineland-Palatinate, demonstrated in impressing manner how inventiveness and entrepreneurship can boost the market by introducing new technologies and products. A+ Composites´ products are fibre-reinforced polymers with unique properties: light and flexible and yet stronger than steel. These materials enable local reinforcement and are also of great interest to the automotive industry, strengthening components exposed to high pressures and temperatures.

On the morning of the next day we continued at the Audi Ingolstadt plant with a guided plant visit at Audi.


The following morning, we continued with the plant visit “Production compact” at Audi and got a brilliant overview of the way from the first idea to the finished car and learned about the entire production process of the Audi Q2, Audi A3, Audi A4 and Audi A5 models and their derivatives.

Subsequently, employees of Audi AG spoke on the following topics:

“Audi in Transformation – Megatrends in the Automotive Industry”

“Sustainability in the supply chain”

“Procurement of e-components”

All lectures were simultaneously translated into French and later on the speakers responded to the questions of the participants and took time for individual discussions with some of their guests.

Since the number of participants for the Audi factory tour was strictly limited, a second group got the chance to visit together with Heinrich Timm the Technical University of Ingolstadt (THI). The highlight was a guided tour through CARISSMA – the new scientific control centre for vehicle safety in Germany! The 123 meter long research building was commissioned in the early summer of 2016 and accommodates a total of ten test facilities on more than 4,000 square meters of usable space, including an indoor test facility for crash tests and driving tests, a drop tower, a laboratory for Car2X communication, a laboratory for research on safe Energy storage, a simulation laboratory and a HiL laboratory.

In addition, CARISSMA will have an open space for full vehicle testing, as well as a driving simulator with hexapod motion platform and a pedestrian protection laboratory for the development of new test and sensing methods.

It was an all-round successful event with many new impressions and exciting prospects for the future of the automotive industry.

Presentation of PAE during the day PFA-ARIA-POLES | 04 July 2019 | Paris

PFA-ARIA-POLES Day organized by the PFA | Automotive & Mobility division, on July 4th, 2019, in Paris, was the occasion for Vincent CAREL, General Delegate of ARIA Lorraine, PAE project manager, to present the European Automotive Pole project: its genesis, its objectives, the planned actions including the organization of a cross-border Automotive Day on 24 September 2019 in Wallonia (Liège) on the theme of recycling.

Presentation of the PAE Project at the ARIA LORRAINE General Assembly, June 18th, 2019, at PSA (Trémery, Moselle)

During this meeting, which brought together more than 40 companies from the regional automotive sector, Vincent CAREL, EAP Project Manager and ARIA LORRAINE’s Delegate General, presented the Association’s 2018 Activities Report. A zoom was made on the European Automotive Pole project, approved by the Interreg Authorities in 2018 and which brings together 12 partners from the Greater Region including ARIA LORRAINE. He described his funding and flagship actions for business.